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Morning Report: Luke Rockhold return possible if Alex Pereira wins title: ‘Let’s get the free belt’

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Luke Rockhold sees a potential clash with Alex Pereira as a pretty profitable matchup.

The former UFC and Strikeforce middleweight champion retired from the sport following his recent performance at UFC 278 in August. After losing a unanimous decision to Paulo Costa in the co-main event of the evening, Rockhold went all out on the backboard and took home the first Fight of the Night bonus for his 11-fight streak with the company.

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A month before Rockhold’s final outing, Pereira established himself as next in line to the top of the division with a decisive knockout of Shawn Strickland at UFC 276. The Brazilian kickboxing sensation now faces defending champion Israel Adesanya at UFC 281 in November. 12 at Madison Square Garden.

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If the Poatan can pull off a third career win over The Last Style Bender, it could be enough to pull Rockhold out of what would have been a short-lived retirement.

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“This Brazilian dude won the title. Alex Pereira,” Rockhold said. Submission Radio when asked what might inspire him to come back. “He will make every wrestler in the fucking game just bite the bit to get this guy. Let’s go to. Let’s take a free belt.

“The only thing is that you have to fight Robert Whitaker or someone else. It’s like fucking [that’s] it will hurt. Because win or lose with Robert Whitaker hurts like hell. This shit is going to hurt, we’re going to fight.”

After three straight losses since September 2017, Rockhold will no doubt have to work his way up to a title shot on his return. However, his thought process is probably not alone when it comes to how most at 185 pounds view the talented striker. A 6-1 Pereira has yet to be truly tested by a great grappler in his MMA career, and stylistically someone like Rockhold would pose an intriguing threat in this area – provided he can reach peak form.

The now 37-year-old former American Kickboxing Academy (AKA) player admitted he was “too old for this shit” during his final post-cage fight interview following Costa’s loss. While Rockhold had his moments during the fight, the gas tank disappeared faster than ever in his previous career.

Three years away took their toll, to put it mildly.

“I tell you, just entering that combat week, I was so exhausted, exhausted and mentally broken in seven months,” Rockhold said. “You know, my body is still ready? And it’s hard to imagine getting into that cage when you’ve been hurt so badly on the track, but I just refused to come off. You know you are investing in what you have taken on. So whatever happens, happens, sort of. You just have to go. And it doesn’t look like where I wanted to go in combat. Coming back from that long hiatus and not doing much due to COVID.

“Of course I feel like I could have played a lot better. I feel like I can kick Paul Costa’s ass any day of the week if I get back to my game it’s all over. And I see the rest of the vision. I feel like I’m getting better, but I just don’t want to get sick anymore. It sucks. And then you have to look after your health in the long run. I did a lot. Do I need to do more? I do not know yet. Let me go to the gym and keep moving, keep thinking. But if I get inspired… if someone inspires me to come back, and you know… you never know.”


Results. DWCS Season 6, Week 10: Bo Nickal needs 52 seconds to finish his opponent, he leads the night with 5 contracts

Skills. Mackenzie Dern praises Charles Oliveira as the best grappler in the sport: “He has the best jiu-jitsu in MMA”

Step. Aaron Pico gives advice to Bo Nikal ahead of potential UFC career: ‘There’s no need to rush’

Nasty. Chris Barnett talks about cheek injury and weight issues at UFC 279

Oops. Martin Batur banned for a year, ONE Championship 160 win overturned after positive PED test

Departure. Aspen Ladd pulls out of UFC due to recent weight loss

Update. USADA responds after Conor McGregor’s 2022 doping control story raises questions

VIDEO stew

Last Contender Series press release of the season.

Randy’s corner 2.

Back to Chandler vs Pit Bulls.

Mike Perry stuff.


Fighter against the Writer. Damon Martin of MMA Fighting talks with Aaron Pico and Max Roskopf.

Damn morning. Mike Heck of MMA Fighting discusses what should headline UFC 282 and UFC 283.



Strap season.

Good good.


It’s impossible to stop him.


Registry extension.


The hype is real.


The Great Combat Sports Trade of 2022.


Vote for Fantasy.

Mom is a champion.

Combat footage.


Allen Brothers 2.0?


Vince Morales (11-6) compared to Jose Johnson (15-7); UFC Vegas 65, November 19

Shane Burgos (15-3) against Marlon Moraes (23-10-1); PFL Championship 2022, November 26

Rafael dos Anjos (31-14) against Brian Barber (18-8); UFC Orlando, Dec 3


Prime Rockhold is one of the most underrated fighters we’ve ever seen. Oh, how I wish we could see him more than we do. 11 fights in the UFC is too few.

Thanks for reading!



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